I have a friend named Charmaine who, for all intents and purposes, is pretty damn great. Few would ever argue otherwise, and if they ever did I doubt they’re around to talk about it. She has a boyfriend who’s a black belt, you see. But more than that, she may or may not be harnessing the dark arts of nature in awesome and terrifying displays of power. Such rumors are best left “unconfirmed”.
Yet one of her mightiest and most well documented abilities is her knack for tolerating my shenanigans. Like many of my friends, I tend to send Charmaine long, doctoral thesis length, Tolkien detailed emails when I get bored; normally when I’m at work because damn that. I get carried away and, before I can help myself, I’m turning a giggle worthy story about falling up an escalator into a 2000 word epic that spans the annals of time while examining the folly of the human condition. It’s grade A silliness, and if it’s good enough for her – then damn it – it’s just got to be good enough for you…
I gotta report this to someone, so it might as well be you, Charmaine.
I took a break from work (haha “work”. Yeah right) to head across the street to the McDonald’s to grab a McMuffin because I am nothing if not a man of the people. Upon my return trip, I was standing at the corner, waiting for the signal to cross, and pretending like I wasn’t already snacking on my hash brown out of a complete lack of patience. And that’s when she showed up.
Don’t worry. This isn’t going to be a long story. I won’t waste your time with needlessly flowery description like I normally do. You won’t find long paragraphs solely dedicated to discussing, at great enthusiasm, the particular shade of radiance created by the sun’s rays through anyone’s hair. You won’t find any drawn out flights of whimsy here. No poetry, and I won’t prose. I serve merely to inform. And this is the information.
Sound is what my senses first detected. Not at all uncommon in Los Angeles, but you can’t ignore it even when you want to. The throaty roar of an engine. Plenty of muscle. Someone was downshifting in something fun, and I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I glanced to my left mostly from boredom.
The source of the commotion was a motorbike. Also not uncommon in Los Angeles and no cause for a double take, yet there definitely was one. Oh, there was a double take. Because of the rider. Obviously. And this is how it goes:
Black bike. Black helmet. Red dress. Black jacket.
My brain could barely process it. She looked like she rode in straight out of a Michael Bay action movie. “Who wears that on a bike?” any viewer automatically inevitably complains who isn’t a heterosexual male. It’s a Hollywood staple, and a silly one at that. Red dress biker chick is the kind of woman on TV who charges into battle with perfectly straightened and maintained hair and high heels. She’s the video game character who jumps into combat to face fully armored opponents with little more than her cleavage and a G-String to protect her.
She’s the tough as nails, scavenging, scrappy rebel fighting for survival against the oppressive regime in the dystopian future where our technology has failed us and the crumbling skyscrapers of our long forgotten golden era dot the landscape like the graveyards of giants. But her armpits somehow always stay shaved and, though she’s literally starving, she never wants for makeup and eyeliner. She’s Katniss Everdeen. More importantly, she’s goddamn red dress biker chick. And there she was two feet from my face. Because real life decided to stop happening.
Motherfucking Los Angeles, man.
“People don’t look like that,” I mumbled to my budget breakfast sandwich. Did I fuck up and accidentally walk into a Maxim photo shoot? Again?
Fucking Los Angeles…
But no. No lights. No cameras. Just a woman on a bike. In a formal looking red dress (and a jacket and a helmet because you can’t skimp on safety) going about her day. She eased off the throttle while coasting to the light expertly timing the signal change. When it flashed to green upon her final approach (almost as if it had been waiting for her arrival) she opened it up, split the lane between a Prius and a cop car, and flew off toward the horizon with not one vehicle left in her path; between her and whatever nemesis she was about to best in kung fu.
Every single person standing at the intersection watched her blow by.
Men, women, mothers, husbands, young, old, it didn’t matter. In that one moment we were all united in awe. A dozen pedestrians stood at the crosswalk. A dozen heads turned.
I’d like to think the officer in the squad car she left in a cloud of exhaust considered pulling her over for a moment, but we all already know he didn’t. He’s a good cop and he does his job, but he doesn’t want to meet an early retirement from the business end of a samurai sword.
Did I mention she had a samurai sword?
Okay, fine, she didn’t have a samurai sword. But she’s definitely going to be receiving one by the end of her journey. Most likely at the end of a montage. What? Hey, I don’t make the rules.
So anyway, that was my morning. Got a McMuffin, saw red dress biker chick, immediately dropped to my knees and renounced Jesus. Because I don’t need the big guy anymore. I am now going to fully embrace a life of sin. It’s the only thing left to do now that red dress biker chick has crossed my path. You know the old saying.
Whelp. I’m off. Got an orphanage to burn down. It’s what she would have wanted. What’s new with you, boo?